Post-Wedding Brunch Etiquette Question

We are just starting the wedding planning process and My fiancee and I really like one hotel to host our guests, and it is in our price range. One issue is approximately 125 guests out of 175 people will be out of town guests. I know it is proper etiquette to host a brunch the next day but I think it is insane to spend upwards of $6500 on the hotel brunch at $32/person with tax and service charge. Both parents have been very generous in contributing to the wedding but I was not factoring this amount into our budget.

My mom is very adamant that you have to invite everyone who stays at the hotel to brunch but I would much rather spend that money on the wedding or our mortgage. The hotel is right in downtown Baltimore and I tried to investigate other alternatives that are within walking distance but none were large enough or willing to rent out the space for a busy Sunday brunch. Keep in mind, this will be in November so a park is not an option. Also, our home is 20 minutes away and not everyone will have a car. If we put items such as fruit and breakfast bars in the welcome bag would that be sufficient? Help!

Jay Remer, The Etiquette Guy, International Protocol and Corporate & Social Etiquette

Congratulations on your upcoming nuptials! If your mother would like to host a brunch, that is her prerogative. It is certainly not an essential ingredient to the celebrations however. I don’t think asking your mother for the money she would spend on the brunch to use for your mortgage or wedding costs is appropriate. It’s her money. I’d also skip the fruit/nutrition bar. If you are on a budget (which I hope you are), how you spend that budget is your decision, unless the money has been earmarked by the person who gave it to you. This milestone in your life should be the way you want it, not the way others think you want it, unless of course the two concepts are one and the same. Many guests may not want to stick around for another day anyway. I would have a heart-to-heart with your mom. She was a bride once and should fully appreciate your concerns. You need to be proactive and assertive, not confrontational or aggressive, but clear. I hope this helps.

Amy Rubins, Fete Perfection

Is it possible to host a less elaborate brunch? In other words, instead of a hot meal can it be a continental style breakfast of assorted pastries, muffins, fruit, juices and coffee? Something lighter and less costly? If so, that’s the route I would try to go. However, let me say that many couples do not host or have a post-wedding brunch at all. They have said their good-byes at the reception and if guests staying at the hotel want to have brunch in the hotel restaurant, they do on their own. Good luck with this. I agree a compromise with mom is the best.

Emmanuela Stanislaus, Precious Occasions, Wedding and Event Planner

I agree. It is not necessary to host a brunch the day after your wedding for the guests of your wedding. Usually, the bride and groom will have a Sunday brunch for immediate family and the bridal party but it is totally optional.

Brandi Hamerstone,
Owner/Senior Wedding Planner All Events Planned

I agree with the rest, a brunch is not necessary so you do not have to spend the money to have one. If your mother insist that you have the brunch, she is more than welcome to host the event herself, using her own money. This money is hers to spend, if she’d like, it wouldn’t be money you would receive from her.
Adding breakfast bars and fruit to the out of town bags is a really great idea though!

Good luck!!